About Us

Alexander Street brings together the skills of traditional publishing, librarianship, and software development to create quality electronic collections. We believe that an electronic publication should:

  • Be carefully crafted by expert editors around a specific subject or discipline.
  • Detail all materials relevant to the subject, whatever their original form or ownership.
  • Contain as many of these materials as possible, in multiple formats if necessary.
  • Be indexed with controlled vocabularies for precise, exhaustive searching.
  • Provide unique ways of searching, viewing, exploring and analyzing the material.
  • Facilitate contributions from scholars and librarians.
  • Be priced to enable unlimited exploration by users.

We are creating a series of products using these values.





Alexander Street, L.L.C. was founded in May 2000, with the goal of publishing large-scale digital collections of exceptional quality in the humanities and social sciences.

From the beginning, we've built products that contained quality in-copyright and previously unpublished material. We also index each database with our unique Semantic Indexing , which allows scholars to search and analyze our materials as never before.

Our first products were letter-and-diary collections in American history and women’s history. From there, we expanded into drama and the performing arts, then into black history, Latin American literature, and on to streaming music and video. Today our collections span over a dozen discipline clusters.

In 2006, we launched our first streaming video collection, Theatre in Video . Educators, researchers, and students now have a powerful tool to study the performing arts in ways never before possible. Our video portfolio includes hundreds of hours of concert dance, opera, documentaries, and theatrical performances by leading actors and directors. Streaming video has also been incorporated into a number of our text collections.

In 2011, we launched our first multidisciplinary streaming video database, called VAST, which we later iterated into our flagship product, Academic Video Online. Today, Academic Video Online contains more than 80,000 streaming videos across a wide variety of disciplines and serves millions of student and faculty users in their teaching and learning.

Today, Alexander Street publishes more than 80 collections totaling many millions of pages, audio tracks, videos, images, and playlists. We’re concentrating on building the best collections we can across the curriculum—in literature; music; women's history; black history; psychological counseling and therapy; social and cultural history; drama, medical, theatre, film, and the performing arts; religion; sociology; and other emerging areas.

Alexander Street products have won significant recognition, including awards for “Best New Product” and “Best Content” from The Charleston Advisor ; numerous appearances on Library Journal ’s “Best of the Year” lists; “Product of the Month” from the History News Network ; many Choice “Outstanding Academic Title” awards; and consistently excellent reviews in library journals.


Our acquisition of Classical International, Ltd. in 2004 provided us with expertise, software, and partners in streaming audio. Since then, we’ve grown our music portfolio from some 35,000 tracks to almost 750,000, and the databases are steadily growing. We’ve also added audio oral histories, speeches, and interviews to our text collections. Our music portfolio has expanded to provide scores, lyrics, reference works, and other related resources.

Late in 2005, we purchased the assets of Ad Fontes, LLC., a publisher of primary texts in religion. The high-quality texts and indexing that Ad Fontes had created across 500,000 pages of extremely rare material provided a natural platform for growth. We have expanded our offerings in the area of religion and social thought, with Social Theory and The Digital Karl Barth Library .

In October 2006, the company acquired the assets of University Music Editions, a small microfilm publisher specializing in the publication of scores, journals, and other musically oriented publications. These collections were subsequently released as part of Music Online: Classical Scores Library .

In April 2007, Alexander Street acquired the principal products of HarpWeek, LLC, publisher of Harper's Weekly and Lincoln and the Civil War .

In 2010, we acquired Microtraining Associates, the largest publisher of books and DVD’s focused on multicultural and competency-based counselor and therapist education. Microtraining has been known for providing cutting edge counseling and therapy training videos and publications since 1974. As an imprint of Alexander Street, Microtraining will continue to break more ground on international, wellness, neuroscience and prevention training with, as always, an emphasis on multicultural and social justice causes. And now, Microtraining’s entire collection of counseling and therapy videos are available online in Counseling & Therapy in Video: Library .

We then acquired Filmakers Library in early 2011. Filmakers Library, founded in 1969, has distributed high-quality, issue-based documentaries to the education market for over 40 years. Now working together, Filmakers Library and Alexander Street continue to acquire and deliver the best non-fiction titles for the education community. The majority of the Filmakers Library catalog is available online through our Filmakers Library Online collection and through our new Academic Video Store , where you can purchase individual titles.

In 2012, we announced our new partnership with Asia Pacific Films, a company dedicated to providing streaming access to culturally and historically significant films from Asia and the Pacific. This partnership led to the development of Asian Studies in Video , a collection comprised primarily of films never before seen outside their country of origin.

Since it was founded, Alexander Street has paid out more than $5 million in royalties and currently pays out more than $2 million annually. We have more than 800 business partners, including music labels (such as EMI); film studios (Warner Bros., Sony-Columbia, and others); publishers (such as Oxford University, Alfred A. Knopf); literary estates, agents, and individual authors; and hundreds of others. We have been the first to publish more than 2,000 works, including plays by such major writers as Sam Shepard and Derek Walcott.


Throughout our short history, Alexander Street and its staff have been fortunate to receive the support, guidance, and suggestions of the community and our customers—and we embrace even our critics. In fact, we understand that their feedback is a primary ingredient contributing to our success. We welcome your comments and thank you for helping us continue to make our collections great!